FAQs

Below are a number of questions we regularly answer. If you have any question that is not here, email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call us at (239) 939 9939

Why is there so much paperwork?

A significant part of the paperwork is mandated by Medicare and government agencies. The medical history questionnaire that we require you to fill out will assist your physician in providing a careful and thorough evaluation of your digestive problems. He can not properly treat or diagnosis your symptoms with out this information.

How do I obtain a copy of my medical records?

The medical records department can provide you with the forms you will need to request records. You can obtain a copy of your records or you can authorize to transfer your medical records. Both options require a signed authorization by you. Call (239)939-9939 option 1 then option 3.

Can my spouse or family pick up my medical records or call for my test results?

Anyone can have access to your records if a “Notice of Privacy” form is on file in your medical record and you have listed them as a person we can communicate with. If they are not listed on your notice of privacy or you have NO notice of privacy form on file in your chart we will not give anyone but you information. The person(s) designated on the form must be able to provide their identity to our staff.

Why do I have to update my Medical information every time I have an appointment?

To provide you with the best medical care possible your physician must have an updated Medical History and he must be made aware of your current state of health. This is only possible by updating the forms we receive at each visit.

Why do I have to update my patient information every time I have an appointment?

In order for our office to file your claims accurately, we must have your most recent information along with a copy of your insurance card. This will ensure that all of your claims are being filed correctly as well as in a timely manner. This is also to protect your privacy and protect your identity from theft.

What do I bring to my office appointment?

Bring your driver’s license or any photo ID and your insurance cards, the forms we sent you in the mail and your co-pay with you when you check in at our front desk. Please bring a list of your current medications, a list of any over the counter drugs that you currently take and dosages for each. If you have any medical or surgical records that pertain to your visit please bring them with you.

When do I need to arrive for my office appointment?

If you are visiting us for the first time as a new patient please arrive 30 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment. If you are an established patient with our office please arrive 15 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment.

How do I know if I need a referral for my office visit?

Your managed care plan may require a referral from your Primary Care Physician (PCP) in order to pay for your visit to a specialist. If you are unsure if a referral is required by your insurance carrier, you will need to contact the customer service department at your insurance carrier’s office. The contact phone number should be located on the back of your insurance card. A referral must be obtained prior to your visit with the doctor. You may also call our office at (239) 939-9939 option 1 then option 2 for assistance. We will be happy to help you with your questions prior to your visit to avoid any disruption to your scheduled office appointment.

Where is your office located?

A detailed map and the address to our offices are located on the web site, just click on location tab.

How much will I need to pay?

We have a detailed “Financial Policy” that is included in your new patient paperwork and is available on our web site, click on information then forms. This policy gives detailed information by the type of insurance coverage and what you will be expected to pay at the time of your visit. We collect the amount that is expected of you at the time of your visit. For insurance questions call (239)939-9939 option 1 then option 2.

What if I need to cancel my appointment?

Digestive Health Physicians understands that sometimes emergencies or other situations do not allow you to keep your appointment. Please contact our office at (239)939-9939 and press option 3 to reschedule your appointment. As a courtesy to our patients, we request cancellations or changes in scheduling be made at least 24 hours in advance. As a courtesy to you we will send you an automated telephone call 2 days prior to your scheduled appointment and remind you of the date, time and location of your appointment.

When can I expect my test results?

During your visit, your physician may give you a prescription and request that you have blood work, stool studies or Hemoccult cards performed or some type of radiology testing.
Certain testing can take up to one to two weeks before the result is sent to our office. Some test results we receive immediately. Your physician will receive a copy of all the tests that he has ordered and he will review and make decisions based on the results. No results will be given to you until your physician has reviewed them.
You will only be called by our office with Biopsy results normal or abnormal all other test results you will only receive a call if they are abnormal, if you need further testing or you need an office appointment to discuss these results.
We will not call you if your results are within normal range and you need no further care.

Some physicians schedule an immediate office appointment to discuss your results, please wait for that appointment to inquire about your results. For test results call (239)939-9939 option 4.

What if I need a prescription refilled?

If your physician prescribed a medication for you and you are running low, to ensure that there are no gaps in your treatment, it is important that you allow time for the refill to take place. It takes 2 working days from the time you call your pharmacy until we can authorize the refill request. This allows the medical assistant time to notify your physician of the request. Your physician then needs to review your chart and authorized the request. Once the request is authorized by your physician we will send the approval electronically to your pharmacy. You may want to confirm with the pharmacy that your prescription is available prior to picking up the prescription.
Please call your pharmacy for any refill request this is fastest and most efficient way to refill your prescription. Please do not call our office after hours or on weekends for prescription refills. The on call doctor is only available for medical emergencies.

What is a Physician Assistant or PA?

Richard Ornato PA-C is the physician's assistant for Digestive Health Physicians. PA's are health care professionals licensed to practice medicine with physician supervision. Richard works under the supervision of all physicians at Digestive Health. PA's attend an intense two year training program after completing a bachelor's degree. Richard received his PA training from Nova Southeastern University with an additional one year Fellowship in Liver Disease. Richard is accredited through the state of Florida.
Richard had been with Digestive Health Physician since 2000, he works closely with all the physicians. There may be times when you are having an urgent problem and you need to see your physician. If your physician does not have an immediate opening in his schedule you will be offered Richard’s assistance. Richard can see and take care of you and follow up with your physician to collaborate your care.

What does the ā€œCā€ stand for after the PA?

The ‘C” after “PA” means that the physician assistant is certified. The person who holds the title has met the defined course of study and has undergone testing by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA). The NCCPA is an independent organization, and the commissioners represent a number of different medical professions. To maintain that "C" after "PA", a physician assistant must log 100 hours of continuing medical education every two years and take the recertification exam every six years.

What if I have an emergency after normal office hours?

If you are having a medical emergency, please Call 911 immediately to ensure you get immediate medical attention. If you are then transported to the hospital, notify the emergency room physician that you are our patient. They will then call the Digestive Health Physician that is on call for that day.

We practice exclusively at Health Park Medical Center. Our goal is to provide timely, high quality consultative services for our patients who require inpatient care. Our main office is just a few minutes from Health Park. This proximity permits us to more effectively provide quality care to our patients who require hospitalization.

We manage our hospital care using a gastroenterology hospitalist model. This means that each week, one physician from our group cares for all of our hospital patients. This provides better continuity of care and allows us to respond promptly to patients in need of our care. Most of our patients are admitted by their primary care physician or one of the hospitalist services. These physicians provide excellent general medical care so we can focus on the care of your digestive problems.

Follow this link to Health Park for a map and driving directions from your home. Lee Memorial Health Systems

Unfortunately, the large number of hospitals in our area has made it unrealistic for our physicians to attend patients in all the facilities in our community and still have sufficient time to provide office and outpatient care. If you are hospitalized at another facility, please request that copies of your reports be sent to our office. This will enable us to maintain continuity of care.

We remain committed to the delivery of personalized high quality care. Our intent is to enable our physicians to be able to devote more time and attention to direct patient care. We greatly value your continued trust in Digestive Health Physicians and look forward to continuing our longstanding history of providing excellent medical care for you, your family, and your friends.

What do I do if I want to ask my physician a question?

We would love to give you direct access to your physicians when you have a question. However if we were to do this then the patient that he is consulting with in their scheduled appointment would be interrupted. We set aside time for you and your physician to have the quality time that you need and deserve. This can only be done with an office appointment in order to provide you with the best medical care possible.

If you have additional questions about your recent visit or procedure, your physician has a trained Medical Assistant that he works directly with to help him with your questions. You must remember when you call the office, if the Medical Assistant can not answer your question and she must discuss this with your physician we will need to call you back.

Your physician divides his time between seeing patients in the office, performing endoscopic procedures, and consulting in the hospital. If you call with a medical question or concern, please realize that your physician may be unavailable for a few hours at a time. We try to give each and every patient the attention they deserve. The medical assistant works with your physician during clinic hours. She cannot take phones calls and divert his attention from the scheduled patients. Please understand that if you are asked to leave a message on the voice mail of his assistant you will receive a call back.